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In Leverage

By Adrian Arroyos

Be Your Own Hero

On 04, Mar 2014 | In Leverage | By Adrian Arroyos

Matthew McConaughey accepts Academy Award for Best ActorAt Sunday night’s Academy Awards presentation, Matthew McConaughey delivered a great acceptance speech for Best Actor. After sharing that he looks up to God in gratitude for the many opportunities he’s had, and that he looks forward to his family, he told an anecdote about being asked who his hero was.

In the story, he reminisces about being asked that question as a teenager. Not sure at first what to say, it takes him some thinking to realize that it’s “myself in ten years.”

Ten years later, he’s asked by the same friend if he’s realized the goal of being his hero, and after a moment of reflection, he says no – his hero is the person he will be in another ten years.

If you tend to be cynical about Hollywood or the narcissism that plagues a lot of public figures, you might think that this means that he’s got delusions of grandeur that keep appearing like an oasis in his not-too-distant future. In other words, if you think he’s all that now…just wait to see what his life will be like in ten years.

You’d be wrong.

The point of the that story was to get to the heart of what he’s chasing. And the reality is that we’ve ALL got to be chasing something. Like Matthew, shouldn’t we ALL be chasing the best version of ourselves? The one that we’ll never be, because a life well-lived is a work in progress?

If you believe in the power of big goals, visualization, or just living life to its fullest, you already know that the person you are at this moment must grow and transform in order to become the person that realizes those dreams. Like Matthew, you’re banking on a future self that isn’t quite here yet…but it’s all just a matter of time. Entrepreneurs, athletes, parents…it doesn’t matter what label fits you, the bottom line is that we’re always in ‘beta.’

This post is not about design, marketing or trends, but about the journey that each of us is going to take over a lifetime. At some point or another, we’re going to dream what seem like impossible dreams, and face what seem like insurmountable odds – in both our personal and work lives. And we’ll look outside of ourselves for answers time and again, as we’ve always done. But when we do, we should always try to keep in mind that future self that we strive to be, because that person should only keep getting better.

What are you chasing?

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